Advice and tips
- WHAT DO I NEED TO KNOW BEFORE BUYING A FIREPLACE STOVE OR FIREPLACE INSERT?
- USE AND OPERATION OF FIREPLACE STOVES AND INSERTS
- WHERE CAN I BUY SPARE PARTS FOR ROMOTOP FIREPLACE STOVES AND INSERTS?
- WHAT TYPES OF ENCLOSURES ARE AVAILABLE FOR FIREPLACE INSERTS?
- WHO CAN I CONTACT IN CASE OF A WARRANTY CLAIM OR FOR SERVICE SUPPORT?
When using the fireplace stove or insert for the first time, follow the instructions and rules in the installation and operating manual.
On first heating, the paint is hardened/fired, which is accompanied by a temporary smell that will later disappear, see also Glossary.
To start a fire, you will need a firelighter or paper, dry kindling and wood chopped into smaller and larger pieces.
Before you start, fully open the primary and secondary air intake.
Place the larger pieces of wood in the chamber, followed by the smaller pieces of wood, firelighter and finally the kindling.
Light the paper or firelighter. This way of starting a fire will ensure optimum heating of the system, reduce the amount of smoke, save fuel and ensure the glass stays clean.
Stoking: The most important thing is to use dry wood only.
Stoking is only necessary when there are only glowing embers and no flames in the stove or insert. Fully open the air intake. Leave the door partially open for a few seconds and only then open it fully. Place 2 to 3 logs on the glowing layer. Close the door.
Set primary air intake to ensure optimum combustion, so the wood burns with a clear flame, without excessive smoke. Leave the secondary air intake open for the duration of heating, regulate the amount to adjust the burning intensity. Secondary air is also used to clean the glass.
- Use dry wood for heating only. Try to start the fire as quickly as possible to sufficiently heat up the chamber, so that the gases released from the wood can burn properly. To achieve this, open the primary and secondary air intake.
- Stoke small amounts of wood at a time (2-3 logs) and always place them on the glowing embers; always leave the secondary air intake fully open.
- If there is a sufficient amount of glowing wood at the bottom of the combustion chamber, reduce the secondary air intake according to your heating requirements. Wood burns slower when the air intake is reduced.
- Do not throw wood into the furnace but insert it slowly so that you don’t damage the chamotte bricks or glazing!
The most important thing is to stoke on glowing embers only, never into flames. However, if you need to stoke into flames, you should leave the door partially open for a few seconds before fully opening it. The chimney draft will suck in the smoke gases and prevent them from entering your room.
You can burn practically any type of wood in Romotop fireplace stoves and inserts. The most important condition is that you should always use dry wood only. Wood should first dry out in an aerated sheltered location for at least 2 years. Ideally, you should chop the wood into pieces before storing it to allow it to dry out faster. In order to achieve the nominal parameters of the heating unit, we recommend using dry wood logs with a diameter of 5-8 cm, a length of 20-30 cm and a moisture content of less than 20% (optimally 10%). Twigs and small pieces of chopped wood should be used to start the fire only. Never use chemically treated wood!
Never use flammable liquids, coke, coal or waste such as chipboard, plastics, bags, impregnated wood or wood savings. sawdust or pellets as fuel!
Burning these materials not only heavily pollutes the environment but it also damages the fireplace stove (insert) and chimney!
The construction of Romotop fireplace stoves and inserts guarantees sufficient primary and secondary combustion air intake into the chamber. The primary air used to start the fire is supplied directly to the burning fuel (usually via the ash tray and grate) and is used for the primary combustion reaction. Secondary air supports the combustion of residual flammable gases in flue gases, which increases the heat output and plays a crucial role in reducing the amount of pollutants that escape into the environment. Secondary air is mainly supplied to the space above the burning fuel. This makes the cold air roll against the inside of the front glass (glazing). At the same time, this process prevents the glass from blackening. When the primary air intake is partially or fully closed, secondary air is also used for primary combustion. Detailed instructions for starting a fire and heating are given in the operating manual.
The glazing may crack after being hit by a log. A deterioration in the quality of glass seals may also play a role. If the seal is damaged, its sealing and dilatation function is compromised, and glazing may crack. In such a case it needs to be replaced. You can purchase glass (glazing) and the corresponding seal from authorized Romotop dealers or directly from Romotop.
In most cases, damage (cracking) occurs mechanically. If the chamotte lining is only cracked, it does not need to be replaced immediately, but it must not have crumbled onto the metal sheet. Cracked chamotte bricks do not lose their function, unless they fall out completely. Chamotte bricks and tiles can be purchased from authorized Romotop dealers or directly from Romotop. Replace chamotte lining/bricks in accordance with the operating manual provided with your fireplace stove or insert.
Only use original spare parts approved by the manufacturer for the repair and maintenance of Romotop products.
The correct function of fireplace stoves or inserts requires a suitable chimney (minimum diameter, draft, seal, etc.). You should therefore consult a professional, for instance a chimney sweep, before installing/fitting a fireplace stove or insert. You will find the required values for the chimney on the technical sheet for the specific product.
If the chimney draft is insufficient, your fireplace stove or insert cannot work properly. The chimney draft works based on the difference in temperature inside the chimney and outside, which is usually lower.
- there is large difference between the temperature inside the chimney and outside.
- the chimney has the right structural height.
- the temperature difference is low and the outside temperature is high.
- it does not have the right structural height, or is situated in the shadow of its own roof or the roof of another building.
- “false” air enters the chimney due to its poor (critical) condition
This is directly related to sufficient chimney draft, temperature differences inside the chimney and outside, the quality of burned wood (the moisture content of wood should not exceed 20%).
The draft may decrease during warm weather or there may be cracks in the chimney, the chimney is not properly insulated or its structural height is too low. We recommend inviting a professional - a chimney sweep - to inspect the chimney, measure the chimney draft and propose the optimum solution.
The minimum effective height of the chimney for flue gas exhaust from a fireplace stove is 5 meters (measured from the clamping ring to the chimney outlet). However, we still recommend discussing the chimney height, dimensions and construction with a professional - chimney sweep - as your local conditions could mean that even 5 meters is not enough.
The structural design of the chimney, the size of its vents and effective height will correspond to the nominal output of the installed fireplace stove or insert. Steel or ceramic materials are the most frequently used. Please consult your questions and requirements with an expert or your chimney sweep.
You need to have a chimney sweep check the chimney at least once per year. In fact, since 1 January 2016 you are required to do so by law! Specifically, by Decree No. 34/2016 Coll.
Flues are checked by a chimney sweep or inspecting technician. When checking, it is imperative to allow the appropriate expert to access all parts of the flue, i.e. from the appliance to the outlet of the given chimney, and also the roof of the building and chimney doors (in order to allow the problem-free removal of soot).
It is important to ensure adequate access for cleaning and maintenance of the fireplace stove or insert, flue and chimney from the moment of installation, if these cannot be cleaned from another location (e.g., from the roof or specifically designed doors).
Your fireplace insert or stove is a high-quality product and no fundamental defects are expected during standard operation. It is important to regularly and carefully check and clean the fireplace stove and flue, always before and after the heating season.
All cleaning and maintenance work must only be carried out when the fireplace stove or insert is completely cold.
Regular inspection and replacement of parts subject to wear and tear, specifically those known to require regular replacement (parts in direct contact with the fire such as chamotte tiles, seals, deflectors, etc.) is very important.
A cracked chamotte tile does not affect the function and service life of the product, as long as it does not fall out completely. Chamotte tiles also need to be replaced if completely damaged by crumbling. Follow the operating manual when replacing chamotte tiles.
We recommend replacing the seal on doors and glass depending on their condition and the amount of use of your fireplace stove and insert, ideally every second season. However, it is necessary to ensure that seals are not burned out, damaged or degraded. Poor seals result in uncontrolled air intake and lead to unregulated combustion. Long-term thermal stress caused by overheating can lead to permanent damage to the structure of the fireplace stove or insert.
If the glass seal is damaged, the sealing and dilatation function is compromised, and the glazing may crack.
When using chemical cleaning agents, avoid contact with the seal in order to prevent degradation.
The manufacturer is not responsible for any damage caused by the use of chemical substances.
The basic rule is to always remove cold ash from the grate of the combustion chamber.
We recommend emptying the ash tray when it is half full, to prevent the ash pile from coming too close to the grate and damaging it due to overheating. At the same time, ash can limit the inflow of air required for combustion. It is best to empty the ash tray when it is completely cool, ideally during preparation for a new heating cycle. Cleaning an ash tray or heating units without an ash tray can also be done by using a vacuum cleaner intended for vacuuming ash, with a filter for finer dirt particles.
And what do I do with the ash itself? Wood ash contains minerals, and so it can be placed in a compost bin or used as a fertilizer in your garden. This only applies to wood ash from wood that was not chemically treated.
Before emptying the ash tray, check that it does not contain hot residual fuel which could cause a fire in the waste bin. Some types of fireplace stoves or inserts have an ash tray located in a basin below the grate, without the option of side removal. In this case, the ash tray can only be removed when the heating unit is not used and cold. Access to the ash tray is possible after lifting the grate.
Fireplace stoves and inserts need to be cleaned at least once per year, after the heating season; in case of more intensive year-long operation they should be cleaned more frequently, as required. Of course, it mainly depends on how frequently you use your fireplace stove. All work must only be carried out when the fireplace stove or insert is completely cold. When cleaning, it is necessary to remove sediment in the flue and combustion chamber. After the heating season ends, remove any freely placed deflectors in order to make it easier to access the area above them, in the direction of the flue. Remove the ceiling deflector and chamotte lining, clean them, and sweep or vacuum all dirt and residual soot and ash from the combustion chamber, as this material can absorb moisture and then cause corrosion. Cleaning (aside from glass) is carried out without water solutions – e.g., you can use a vacuum cleaner or steel brush.
After cleaning, close the fireplace stove or insert with the appropriate sliding door when not in use.
Modifications of the heating unit are not permitted.
The vents of the exchanger should be cleaned as required, at least 1x every 3 weeks, using the steel brush provided. The amount of dirt is largely affected by the moisture content of the fuel, means of operation (e.g., operation in energy saving mode – air regulators closed), and also the manner of connection to the heating system (see operating manual). The vents of the exchanger can be accessed from the combustion chamber. In fireplace stoves and inserts where deflectors are used to direct the draft, these must first be removed.
A clogged exchanger will cause excessive smoke in the combustion chamber; the smoke may even escape into the room. A layer of dirt also reduces the efficiency of the hot-water exchanger.
The integrity and condition of the chamotte lining must be monitored during the heating season. The spaces between individual chamotte tiles/bricks prevent the tiles from cracking due to thermal dilatation and must not be filled in any way, e.g. with grout, as was usually done in older solid fuel heating units. Cracked chamotte bricks do not lose their function, unless they fall out completely. If a piece of chamotte lining falls out, it will need to be replaced.
Replace chamotte lining/bricks in accordance with the operating manual provided with your fireplace stove or insert.
The most common reason is the low combustion temperature in the chamber, which is not sufficient to optimally heat up the whole system. Another cause may be an insufficient amount of combustion air. Therefore do not close the secondary air intake, which ensures spontaneous rinsing of the glass and so keeps it clean. Soot on the glass is also caused by using wet wood and poor chimney draft conditions.
All Romotop fireplace stoves and inserts are equipped with a glass cleaning system using secondary air, which helps keep the glass clean during heating. In addition to using suitable fuel and ensuring sufficient air intake and chimney draft, the operation of the fireplace stove or insert also affects the cleanliness of the glass. In this regard, we recommend stoking one layer of fuel only and spreading it out evenly around the furnace, as far from the glass as possible. If the glass becomes dirty during heating, we recommend increasing the burning intensity by opening the air regulator, which usually means the glass clears by itself.
A small amount of soot may remain on the glass. There’s no need to despair, if the glass in the door is smoky, you can simply use a wet cloth dipped in cold ash (the ash must not contain any impurities such as small stones, etc.) to mechanically wipe the glass. Once the glass is more or less clean, use some old newspaper, a kitchen paper towel or tissue to finish the job. This simple method will give excellent results. Of course, all work must only be carried out when the fireplace stove or insert is completely cold.
Naturally, liquid cleaning agents are also often used to clean glass in fireplace stoves and inserts. However, in many cases, regardless of the composition of the cleaning agent and its affect on the residue of combustion (particles of ash, etc.), these products can permanently damage various parts of the fireplace stove or insert – such as seals, the decorative color of the glass, the glass itself, etc.
Due to the above, Romotop does not recommend the use of any chemical cleaning agents on its products and is not responsible for any damage caused by the use of such chemical agents.
The surface of fireplace stoves and inserts is protected by a fireproof surface finish. This fireproof surface finish is not anti-corrosive. Avoid direct contact with water, other cleaning agents, abrasive substances and solvents.
All surfaces should be cleaned with a soft, dry cloth.
If a damaged or scratched surface needs to be resurfaced, use the original spray paint based on the required hue of your fireplace stove or insert only; this can be purchased from authorized Romotop dealers or directly from Romotop.
Parts that are mechanically stressed during operation are subject to friction. The friction surfaces of door hinges and the closing mechanism should be lubricated from time to time using carbon oil or a lubricant suitable for high temperatures. Ask your authorized dealer